Querying domestication: the ethnography of human-animal entanglements
Gro Ween (University of Oslo)
David Anderson (University of Aberdeen)
Marianne Elisabeth Lien (University of Oslo)
David Anderson, Marianne Lien and Gro Ween.
Being Human
University Place 1.219
Start time:
6 August, 2013 at 9:00
Session slots:

Short abstract:

The term domestication has become a problematic term to describe the complex relationships between humans and non-human animals. This panel invites perspectives and elaborations of inter-species relations that include a perspective on multiple agency involved in human-animal entanglements.

Long abstract:

Scientific definitions of domestication have traditionally narrated a sudden revolution: A radical change of approach to human-animal relations, involving technological achievements that set off a steady increase in human control over growth and reproduction. Such perspectives have been highly biased by agrarian structures. Not only do such strict definitions excluding the majority of human-animal relations, they also restrict our views of the constituent elements of human-animal entanglements. Human-animal relations are not only hierarchical. Attempts at inventing new ways of describing ongoing inter-species encounters include terms such as 'co-domestication, 'mimesis' , 'trust', 'sentience', 'companionship', 'co-evolution', 'domus' or 'commensialism'. New investigations of domestication pay attention to the range of what could be labeled as domestication practices. These stretch from 'the making known', to 'disciplining and ordering' to 'nurturing'. However each of these also fold into each other, including numerous possible forms of animal agency, and awareness of that animals, just as humans, also discipline and order each other. This panel welcomes reflections on the intimate inter-species gaze - Tim Ingolds being with - as well as Donna Haraway's becoming with. We also encourage people to think of how relationships are emplaced in specific environments which might include sentient landscape features, water, weather, and technologies. The panel is open to ethnographies on -the myriad of entangled co-shaping.